Microbit Accelerometer Basics #tt8
Tinkerer: Lory Livezey
The Micro:bit has a build-in accelerometer, that allows you to detect it's movements on the X, Y, and Z planes. In this tuturial, we're going to do a very simple project that will detect the values as the Micro:bit is tilted. We'll use this to build on other projects.
In this lesson you will learn:
- How to find blocks that you may not be familiar with using the search and color codes
- That certain types of blocks will only fit into certain "slots"
- How the accelerometer is used to detect when the Microbit is moved
- How to save a project
- You will be starting from scratch
What you will need
Step 1 - Log Into MakeCode for Micro:bit
If you're not familiar with the basics of the MakeCode web site, please check out the previous tutorial, Micro Bit Simple Hello World.
Browse to the Make Code Web Site
Step 2 - Set Up On Start Block
I always display something OnStart so I know the Micro:bit is working. Put any icon you like on the screen:
Basic > show icon
Step 3 - Detect Movement in Forever Block
To detect movement, we'll need the
Accelerometer code block. I can tell you where it is, but i'm going to teach you a handy trick. Type the first few letters in the
Search box, then hit enter.
Do you see how the block is
dark pink and the
Input section is also that color? Next time, you can find the acceleration block in
Input. Drag the block over to the canvas.
You may notice that the block doesn't fit into the
Forever block. We need something else... We'll just let that block hang out on the canvas until we find it a home.
Let's display the number we get from the accelerometer to the screen.
Basic > show number
Notice that when you hover over a block, it will give you more information about it. Drag
Show Number over to the canvas. See how this one fits into the
Show Number block into the
Acceleration block will now snap nicely into the
Show Number block. Set it to
X first, then Axis you want to test:
Your blocks should look like this:
Now we're ready to run it on our Micro:bit to see what it displays.
Step 4 - Upload Code to Micro:bit
Name the project something descriptive and save it:
Go to your
Downloads folder and drag the file that was created to your
Step 5 - Test the Micro:bit on the X Axis
The Micro:bit will now display the value of the
X axis. First tilt it all the way to the left, then keep it still. You should see a number close to
-1000 (-1024 is the max). Tilt it all the way to the right and you will see around
+1000 (+1024 is the max).
Step 6 - Repeat these steps for the Y Axis
Go back to
Step 3 and change the Axes to Y. Upload the code and see how the numbers output.
- Why do you think only certain types of blocks and be added to a container?
- If the X axis detects movement from side to side, and the Y axis detects movement back and forth, what type of movement do you think the Z axis detects?
- What uses for the accelerometer can you think of, or that you may use every day?
You now have a basic understanding of how the
accelerometer works and how the numbers change as the Micro:bit is tited on the X and Y axes. This knowledge will be important as we move on to more advanced projects. See you soon!
|Sending Accelerometer Readings Between Two Microbits Using Radio #tt9|